Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Colorado Governor’s Distinguished Improvement Award Winners

Congratulations to several Galileo K-12 Online users for their recent accolades – having schools within their districts awarded the Colorado Governor’s Distinguished Improvement Award for exceptional student growth.

“On the school performance framework that is used by the state to evaluate schools, these schools ‘exceed’ expectations on the indicator related to longitudinal academic growth and ‘meet or exceed' expectations on the indicator related to academic growth gaps,” said the Colorado Department of Education website.

ATI is proud to be the partner of so many schools across the nation who have worked to raise student achievement and we are pleased to see these schools being recognized for their accomplishments.

Monday, December 19, 2011

A Time Saver for K-2 Teachers: The Early Benchmark Literacy Assessment Series

As an experienced kindergarten teacher, searching for ways to maximize instructional teaching time with my students was one of my foremost goals. My students were formally tested three times a year and this was a very time consuming task as each child needed to be tested individually. With budget cuts, paraprofessional assistance was not offered, and that left the assessing up to me, the teacher. There was also the added dilemma of how to manage 25-30 other five year olds while testing individuals, not to mention the loss of quality instructional time. During each testing period, it generally took a minimum of 10 minutes to assess each child for language arts alone. In a classroom of 25 students, this meant over 250 quality instructional minutes lost, three times a year.
The Galileo Early Literacy Benchmark Assessment Series (ELBAS) tests offers an effective way to get literacy testing done in a short period of time. In a computer lab situation, the entire class can be tested on standards based objectives in 30-45 minutes. In a classroom environment, one or two students can be testing independently while the teacher continues to teach. The test responses are automatically recorded and scored online and are available to the teacher to help guide instruction. There is no loss of instructional time and the potential for frustrating interruptions and behavioral issues are no longer an issue. The ELBAS tests are offered for grades K-2 and inform teachers if their students are on track to pass state testing benchmarks by the end of grade 3. The ELBAS tests are a positive experience for students and teachers alike, help streamline assessment, and offer a wonderful time-saving solution for teachers during assessment periods. In addition, ATI can analyze the assessments and provide Developmental Levels to show growth over the course of the year.
Click here to see more information about the early literacy assessments.
-Laura Babcock, Educational Management Services Coordinator

Monday, December 12, 2011

Testing Activity Report

Galileo K-12 Online includes a number of useful administrative reports designed for such tasks as checking demographic data for errors and monitoring user activity. One of the administrative reports available in Galileo K-12 Online that may be particularly useful this time of year is the Testing Activity Report. This report can be run at the district or school level and can assist administrators in monitoring the extent to which scheduled benchmark or formative assessments have been taken.

To use the Testing Activity Report, the administrator selects a timeframe for assessments he or she wishes to monitor. A key feature is that you can select whether to display all tests administered during the selected time period, only benchmark tests, or only formative tests.

The resulting report lists all the selected assessments scheduled during the chosen time period, the number of students scheduled to take the tests, and the number who have done so.

If the Testing Activity Report is generated at the school level, another useful feature is that administrators can drill-down to get a list of classes and the percent of completion for each. With this information, administrators can identify potential problems and work with their staff toward a solution.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Producing Significant Positive Changes in Children’s Cognitive Functioning


As early as 1991, research findings from a study undertaken by John R. Bergan, founder and current President of ATI, indicated that a brief, two-month implementation of an intervention in which assessment information was gathered to guide instruction had a direct effect on the acquisition of basic math and reading skills. The acquisition of these skills had a significant effect on promotion to the first grade and on referral to and placement in special education. In the control condition, one in every 3.69 children was referred for possible placement in special education. In the intervention condition, only one out of every 17 children was referred. In the control condition, approximately one out of every five children was placed in special education. In the intervention condition, only one out of every 71 children was placed in special education. Gathering assessment information to guide instruction continues to drive the design of the Galileo K-12 Online Instructional Improvement System.

Current independent research funded by recipients of a federal grant administered by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education and implemented by MAGI Services demonstrated strong evidence that the benchmark pilot project was a success. The Galileo K-12 Online assessments were shown to provide teachers with a tool to inform and shape their instruction with the goal of increased student mastery of learning standards. Read Full Paper

Other success stories can be found on our website at ati-online.com. Contact your Field Services Coordinator with your success stories. We would be privileged to share them in subsequent blogs.

*J.R. Bergan, I.E. Sladeczek, R.D. Schwarz, American Educational Research Journal (Volume 28, Number 3 - Fall 1991). pp. 683-714, © 1991 by American Educational Research Association. Reprinted by Permission of SAGE Publications.